In the age of the internet we are all embedded in systems of people and technology. These are ‘social machines’, systems that can be influenced and shaped from many directions. While we use this interconnectivity to our advantage, it can also create vulnerabilities for malicious actors to exploit – disrupting and damaging businesses and governments, and degrading trust across our open societies.
Social machines is the authority for behavioural and social science led applications for cybersecurity. We support the resilience of organisations within the open society through cutting edge research and innovation, with a focus on creating commercially marketable products and services.
Our team is expert in human behaviour – at the cutting edge of our knowledge on what it means for humans to want, to believe, and to act; on who it is we are. Our work is robust and evidence-based and includes our particular emphasis on interactions within systems of humans and technology.
Our team comprises behavioural and social scientists and technologists, with backgrounds in the UK government defence and security sector, academia and industry. We are positioned at the cutting edge of our disciplines and draw on our networks across these sectors to deliver.
Social machines works across research and innovation ‘technology readiness levels’ to (1) create commercial applications and (2) shape technical and regulatory standards. We do this by:
We are advising a cyber wargame developer so that behaviour change and social influence principles (including robust evaluation methods) are built into game design.
We are undertaking a systematic review of theory and practice of online influence for an organisation with an international footprint.
We are developing an evidence base focused on tailored, user-centric training and awareness: what works for who, when, where? The evidence base is being applied to redevelopment of a training package to create the most effective training and awareness package in the commercial marketplace.
We are creating an evidence base to support organisational resilience to cyber-attack: what interventions work, in what context, for who? The mature service will embed expert consultants within organisations to facilitate behaviour change interventions using this evidence base.